Since 2002 Perimeter Institute has been recording seminars, conference talks, and public outreach events using video cameras installed in our lecture theatres. Perimeter now has 7 formal presentation spaces for its many scientific conferences, seminars, workshops and educational outreach activities, all with advanced audio-visual technical capabilities. Recordings of events in these areas are all available On-Demand from this Video Library and on Perimeter Institute Recorded Seminar Archive (PIRSA). PIRSA is a permanent, free, searchable, and citable archive of recorded seminars from relevant bodies in physics. This resource has been partially modelled after Cornell University's arXiv.org.
A simple theorem of Dirac identifies primary first-class constraints as generators of transformations, \'that do not affect the physical state\'. This result has profound implications for the definition of physical states and observables in the quantization of constrained systems, and leads to one aspect of the infamous \'problem of time\' in quantum gravity. As I will discuss, a close look at the theorem reveals that it depends crucially on the assumption of an absolute time.
The South Pole Telescope (SPT) is a 10-meter submm-wave telescope optimized for large-field imaging of the cosmic microwave background (CMB) at arcminute resolution. The first key project of the SPT is a large area survey to find galaxy clusters using the Sunyaev-Zel\'dovich effect. Combined with optically determined redshifts, the survey yields will be used to place constraints on the nature of dark energy, via its effect on the growth of clusters and the geometry of the universe. Working toward this goal, the SPT has surveyed two 100 square degree fields at high sensitivity.
The standard Hamiltonian formulation of (first order) gravity breaks manifest covariance both in its retention of the Lorentz group as a local gauge group and in its discrepant treatment of spacelike and timelike diffeomorphisms. Here we promote more covariant alternatives for canonical quantum gravity that address each of these problems, and discuss the implications for both the classical and the quantum theory of gravity. By retaining the full local Lorentz group, one gains significant insight into the geometric and algebraic properties of the Hamiltonian dynamics.
(Samson Abramsky) Adrian Kent Wayne Myrvold Jos Uffink Lev Vaidman
Julian Barbour Huw Price Lee Smolin Roderich Tumulka William Unruh
This course is aimed at advanced undergraduate and beginning graduate students, and is inspired by a book by the same title, written by Padmanabhan. Each session consists of solving one or two pre-determined problems, which is done by a randomly picked student. While the problems introduce various subjects in Astrophysics and Cosmology, they do not serve as replacement for standard courses in these subjects, and are rather aimed at educating students with hands-on analytic/numerical skills to attack new problems.
There are a number of arguments in the philosophical, physical and cosmological literatures for the thesis that time is not fundamental to the description of nature. According to this view, time should be only an approximate notion which emerges from a more fundamental, timeless description only in certain limiting approximations. My first task is to review these arguments and explain why they fail.